**Article written by celebrity nutrionist Kimberly Snyder
Why is diet soda unhealthy? Let me count the ways!
1. NeurotoxicWhile artificial sweeteners may be a zero calorie alternative to sugar, they are in no way healthier. Diet sodas may use a variety of artificial sweeteners in place of sugar, including aspartame, which acts as a neurotoxin.
Also known as NutraSweet, aspartame originally received FDA approval for use in carbonated beverages in1983, and it still remains the most commonly used sweetener in diet soda. Annually, reactions to aspartame result for a majority of the adverse reaction reports made to the food and drug administration.
Made from L-aspartyl-L-phenylalanyl-methyl-ester, aspartame is 200 times as sweet as sugar and contains negligible calories. Once in the human body, aspartame breaks down into phenylalanine, aspartic acid, and methanol. Methanol is a wood alcohol poison that, when heated above 86 degrees Fahrenheit (the human body temperature is 98.6 degrees), converts to formaldehyde. Aspartame is also an excitotoxin that builds up in the brain, and can excite brain neurons to the point of cell death.
2: Causes Headaches and Other Symptoms
Made from a modified sugar molecule, sucralose is supposed to pass through the body unabsorbed. Because sucralose is relatively new in the market still, its long-term effects have not been measured. Some evidence1 suggests sucralose may cause migraines, gastrointestinal issues, and thymus gland damage. Sucralose may also intensify sugar cravings, increase appetite, and trigger insulin release.
3: AcidifyingSoda is made up of a number of acidic chemicals. It is one of the most acidic substances humans ingest. The acids in diet soda demineralize the bones and teeth, and can lead to fractures and osteoporosis. Acid in the body also can lead to a number of health conditions such as inflammation and corrosion of body tissue. When your body is overly acidic your skin will not be as beautiful or youthful. It will contribute to looking older.
4: CaffeinatedMany diet sodas contain cafeine, which is an artificial stimulant and an addictive substance. Caffeine also excessively taxes the liver and can hamper its ability to cleanse and filter toxins from the body. Additionally, caffeine can trigger stress hormones, which can result in chronic stress and weight gain. Caffeine is also a diuretic, which dehydrates the body. It’s best to avoid caffeine in all its forms, particularly diet soda.
5: Increases Risk of ObesityStudies show that although diet soda has no caloric value, it may have an impact on insulin similar to sugar ingestion. This is most likely due to the cephalic phase insulin response in the brain. When you taste the sweet in diet soda, your body perceives it as sugar and causes the pancreas to release insulin just as it would if you were consuming actual sugar.
Some studies show that drinking diet soda may increase the incidence of obesity and/or prevent you from losing weight. In fact, researchers at the University of Texas Health Center made some startling findings when testing the link between obesity and diet soda.
Obesity risk increased as followed:
26.5 percent for people drinking up to ½ can of diet soda per day, and 24 percent for regular soda drinkers consuming up to one can per day
54.5 percent for one to two cans of diet soda per day as opposed to 32.8 percent for those drinking the same amount of regular soda
57.1 percent for people drinking more than two cans of diet soda per day as opposed to 47.2 percent for people drinking the same amount of regular soda
In other words, diet soda consumption had a higher correlation with obesity rates than consumption of caloric soda containing sugar or high-fructose corn syrup.
6: Increases Toxic LoadThere’s not a lot that’s natural in diet soda. Here are just a few of the ingredients you may find:
Doesn’t sound so delicious and healthy, does it! It sounds nasty, and that is because it is indeed a nasty product. Diet soda places a significant toxic load on your liver and can contribute to toxic sludge in your intestines. You are much better off drinking pure, filtered, non-tap water.
7: Increases Risk of Heart DiseaseA study at University of Miami Miller School of Medicine4 showed that people who drank diet soda daily had a 61 percent increased risk of a cardiovascular event. The study followed more than 2,500 participants for about nine years, during which 559 vascular events occurred. Even accounting for age and other risk factors, the risk with diet soda consumption appeared to be at least 48 percent higher. With that kind of risk, why take a chance on diet soda?
8: May Contribute to Metabolic SyndromeA study at University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health in 2008 linked diet soda to metabolic syndrome, a cluster of metabolic disorders including obesity, high blood pressure, elevated triglycerides and hormone resistance. According to the study, consuming diet soda increased the risk of developing metabolic syndrome by 34 percent, which was higher than the elevated risk from consuming two other unhealthy types of foods – meat (26 percent increased risk), and fried foods (25 percent increased risk).
With all of these health risks, you have to ask yourself, is diet soda worth it? Avoiding soda may be one of the best things you can do for your health and beauty.